Jack Steven in his new colours.
Jack Steven in his new colours.

McGuire wants answers on Steven stabbing story

Collingwood president Eddie McGuire has demanded Geelong come clean about Jack Steven's mysterious stabbing.

The Cats coach fronted the media on Thursday and warned against drawing a link between Jack Steven's mental health battles and the stabbing incident.

Details are still unclear as to how the 30-year-old ended up with the injury and a police investigation is ongoing.

McGuire said Scott could put an end to any speculation today.

"There's an easy solution, Scotty - tell us what the hell happened," he said on his Triple M breakfast radio show.

"Then we won't have to jump the gun and figure out the line between the two points and all the rest of it.

"That's the easy way, just tell us what happened. Then we'll be able to move on."

Co-host Luke Darcy noted the sensitivities around Steven's situation and a coach's natural desire to protect his players.

"My point is don't have a press conference if you're not going to say anything," McGuire said.

"Wait til you can and then do it.

"It's a massive story so people are going to report on it."

On Thursday Scott said the Cats off-season recruit was the "victim of something serious" and is expected to return to the club within days.

Steven came close to walking away from the game last year as he dealt with mental health issues, playing just seven games for St Kilda in 2019.

"I get the feeling that some people want to roll some of the previous problems that Jack has had into this current situation and I would caution against that. They are two separate issues," Scott said.

"My sense is that some feel Jack might have some sort of case to answer here. I haven't seen or heard any information that would imply that.

"It is clear he was a victim of something quite serious that required hospitalisation. I think the priority should be his well being and part of that is respecting his privacy as well."

Steven was discharged from hospital on Tuesday after arriving at Cabrini Hospital in Melbourne at about 1am on Sunday with a stab wound that required surgery to repair the injury under his right thoracic duct in his chest.

Scott said he didn't think Steven should have to explain the circumstances of what happened to be cleared to play again but more clarity would help the club assist him moving forward.

"I think it's wrong that some people have jumped the gun and said that this is an AFL integrity matter and somehow Jack has a case to answer before he is allowed to play footy again. I just think that is assuming the worst in people," Scott said.

"We'd like to know the circumstances only so we can help him, so he can help us. Those two things go together really clearly.

"I think Jack is a good fun guy, our players have really warmed to him and he's been a real positive through this pre-season.

 

 

Steven in action during a pre-season training session. Picture: Glenn Ferguson
Steven in action during a pre-season training session. Picture: Glenn Ferguson

 

"He's certainly not your cookie-cutter AFL player, he is a little bit different but I could speak about 30 of our players in a similar manner because we respect their right to be individuals.

"He's a fun-loving guy but no-one should extrapolate that to that it means he loves a good time to the point that he goes and does the wrong thing consistently. That is a dangerous extrapolation."

The AFL is expected to begin an investigation when the police have finalised their work.

Scott said it was too early to predict when Steven, who missed Round 1 because of injury, would make his Geelong debut.

"He is very much in our thoughts when it comes to the possible composition of our team in 2020," Scott said.

"He was travelling well (in the pre-season) but missed Round 1 with a minor issue, it was touch and go whether we play him and we took the conservative approach with him."

Steven, who grew up in Lorne, was granted his wish to be traded to Geelong after 11 seasons at St Kilda where he played 183 games and won four best and fairest awards.

MORE NEWS:

 

Cats clarify Steven's damage as police gather details

 

Riewoldt urges Steven to 'straighten up'

 

AFL clears final hurdle for 2020 fixture release

 

Originally published as Eddie wants answers on Jack Steven story


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